Archive | Canadian Media Resource Articles

AUDIO: Ontario pledges ‘support’ for year-round road access to 3 remote First Nations (CBC News Thunder Bay – August 21, 2017)

Province says it’s working with Webequie, Nibinamik and Marten Falls on year-round road projects

The provincial government says it’s working with three remote northwestern Ontario First Nations to develop year-round road access that will link the communities to Ontario’s highway system. The partnership between the province, Webequie, Nibinamik and Marten Falls will also facilitate access to the Ring of Fire — a mineral-rich area in the James Bay lowlands, about 575 kilometres north of Thunder Bay — according to the province.

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne made the announcement Monday morning in Thunder Bay, Ont., during her first scheduled stop on a day-long tour of the city. The premier was flanked by three of her ministers — Indigenous Relations Minister David Zimmer, Northern Development and Mines Minister Michael Gravelle and Bill Mauro, Ontario’s minister of municipal affairs.

“I’m very pleased to announce today that we have reached an agreement to build a road into the Ring of Fire,” Wynne said. “I’ve looked forward to this particular day coming for some time.” Continue Reading →

Climate crusaders have got lost in space – by Peter Foster (Financial Post – August 18, 2017)

Climate derangement has claimed another celebrity astrophysicist. Last month, Stephen Hawking, author of A Brief History of Time, declared that Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris agreement meant that earth could become like Venus, where it rains sulphuric acid and temperatures reach 250 C.

Now Neil DeGrasse Tyson, “science communicator” and host of the 2014 TV series Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey, has claimed that climate science is as certain and predictable as next week’s solar eclipse. DeGrasse Tyson tweeted: “Odd. No one is in denial of America’s Aug 21 total solar eclipse. Like Climate Change, methods & tools of science predict it.”

With regards to Hawking’s claim, Roy Spencer, a climate specialist at the University of Alabama, pointed out that Venus had 93 times as much atmosphere and 22,000 times as much carbon dioxide as earth, so we shouldn’t be too worried about it raining acid any time soon. Whatever Donald Trump’s flaws, he’s not threatening to repeal the laws of physics and chemistry. Continue Reading →

World’s top 10 silver mines – by Vladimir Basov ( – August 20, 2017)

Often silver is outshone by gold, with most market participants paying attention to the yellow metal. At the same time, silver has many characteristics that makes the precious metal an attractive commodity and irreplaceable component in many applications – particularly for industry-related companies and their investors.

Silver boasts a multitude of properties that make it unique, including its strength, malleability and ductility, its electrical and thermal conductivity, its sensitivity to and high light reflectance, and its ability to endure extreme temperature ranges. Silver’s remarkable properties restrict its substitution in most applications.

Silver is used in the jewellery, electronics and electrical industries, energy, automotive as well as in medicine and optics. Silver is also an important investment instrument. Continue Reading →

Historicist: The Man the Rocks Talked To: A.P. Coleman uncovered Toronto’s prehistory, among other adventures – by Dennis Duffy ( – August 19, 2017)

Such a map as Coleman’s (and he drew many such, across Canada and elsewhere as he
took his geology students along on summer expeditions) was more than a guide to the
origins of the Sudbury Big Nickel that you can spy from the Trans-Canada. It helped
provide the kickoff for the exploitation of Northern Ontario’s mineral—as opposed
to timber—resources. It also promoted the growth of Bay Street, which has done so
much to reshape Ontario’s image and boost Toronto’s takeoff toward its present
position in the financial and commercial life of the country.

If you’re at the Evergreen Brick Works Market in the Don Valley, walk north along some 200 yards of lovingly created wetland. When you’ve gone about 50 yards past that, you will be on a little rise. Look behind over your shoulder for a view of the downtown skyline.

Then keep on walking until you get to a little cul-de-sac and look at the cliff face that you have been staring ahead at for the last while. It is overgrown. The small plaque in front of you states that you are facing one of the oldest geological formations in the Toronto region and that it was first “discovered” (let’s be more precise and call it “labelled”) in the 1890s by geologist A.P. Coleman (April 4, 1852–February 26, 1939), a scientist and public intellectual of great renown in his day and a figure still dimly remembered now. Coleman’s work on the traces of the last great ice age (the Pleistocene) enable us to view the Brick Works park within the broad perspective of the long history of our city. Continue Reading →

Four warning signs that Teck’s spectacular gains are over – by David Berman (Globe and Mail – August 18, 2017)

Teck Resources Ltd. rewards nimble investors who can move against the current, selling the stock when times are good and buying it when the outlook is dismal. Today, conditions are excellent for the Vancouver-based miner, and that suggests shareholders should consider departing from this roller coaster of an investment.

On the surface, this might not sound like a great idea, given Teck’s stellar second-quarter results, released late last month. Teck, which produces copper, zinc and steelmaking coal from mines in Canada, the United States, Chile and Peru, topped analysts’ estimates with a profit of $577-million or $1 a share – way up from a profit of just 3 cents a share a year ago.

Analysts had been expecting a profit of 90 cents a share, according to Reuters. The company’s debt levels are also falling, which is good. Net debt per share declined to $9.59, according to a report from Canaccord Genuity, down from $13.42 a share last year, which is a steeper drop than analysts had been expecting. Continue Reading →

[U.S. Environmental Movement] What can really be done about foreign influence in elections? – by Gary Mason (Globe and Mail – August 18, 2017)

Vivian Krause, a B.C.-based independent researcher and writer who has investigated
the role U.S.-based foundations play in the financing of Canadian environmental
groups claiming charitable status, has submitted a 200-plus page complaint with
Elections Canada on the same subject….“But Canadian elections should be fought
using Canadian resources. Tides has Canadianized its money through Tides Canada,
but that’s just cosmetics. They are breaking the spirit of the law here,
in my opinion.”

When an investigation by The Guardian pulled back the curtains on the winning campaign in the Brexit referendum, the newspaper made a somewhat shocking discovery: evidence of foreign intrusion.

It was revealed that factions behind the Leave campaign were employing the services of analytics firms based offshore: AggregateIQ in Victoria, and another in the United States, Cambridge Analytica, a company owned by U.S. billionaire Robert Mercer, one of the men who bankrolled Donald Trump’s campaign for the U.S. presidency.

The microtargeting strategies used by the Leave forces were highly effective and almost certainly swung the vote in their favour. But what has some concerned are indications that perhaps not everything about the involvement of the foreign entities was above board. Continue Reading →

BHP commits $2.5bn to extend life of Spence copper mine in Chile – by Cecilia Jamasmie ( – August 17, 2017)

Mining giant BHP (ASX:BHP) greenlighted Thursday a long-awaited $2.46 billion expansion of its Spence copper mine in Chile, which will add another 50 years to the operation’s productive life.

The decision comes at a time when copper prices have reached their highest levels since late 2014 and will boost BHP’s annual copper production by around 185,000 tonnes of copper over the first decade of the expanded operation, with first production expected in 2021.

Spence’s expansion contemplates the construction of a concentrator plant and a desalination plant at Mejillones port, located about 60 km north of Antofagasta city, which will be built and operated by a third party. BHP has committed to a 20-year lease nominally worth $1.43 billion. Continue Reading →

Editorial: Terrorist attacks plague Burkina Faso – by John Cumming (Northern Miner – August 16, 2017)


Global mining news

This week has been a particularly bloody one for sub-Saharan, West Africa mining nations, with major terrorist attacks on targets a day apart in Burkina Faso and Mali.

In Burkina Faso’s capital Ouagadougou on Aug. 13, two attackers arriving on motorcycles — described as “very young” by one witness — shot dead 16 people, including at least eight foreigners, in a Turkish restaurant named Aziz Istanbul in what Burkina Faso President Roch Marc Christian Kaboré condemned as “a despicable attack that has Ouagadougou in mourning.”

The restaurant was said to be packed with foreigners, who had gone to spend the evening watching soccer on TV. In a counter assault that lasted until morning, the two attackers were killed by state security forces, five of whom were among the additional 22 people wounded, according to Agence France Presse. Some 40 people were freed by the counter assault. Continue Reading →

Casanova of the Klondike – by Pierre Berton (Globe and Mail – December 24, 2004)

Of all the eccentric characters who made their pile in the Klondike, my favourite is Swiftwater Bill Gates, a moon-faced little American smooth-talker who was transformed from a penniless dishwasher in Circle City, Alaska, to a potential millionaire.

He might have become a millionaire, had he managed to hold on to his wealth, the bulk of which came from a share he held in Claim No. 13 on Eldorado Creek. Considered unlucky at first because of its number, it turned out to be one of the richest pieces of ground in the gold fields.

A legendary gambler and skirt-chaser, he dropped $500 in less than five minutes at faro and promptly stood drinks for the crowd at a cost of $112. He also lost $5,000 on one bet during a stud poker game he was just watching. When short of cash, he would borrow it at 10 per cent a month in interest so he could shoot pool at $100 a frame. Continue Reading →

First Nations-owned company receives ‘up to $60M’ to connect Pikangikum to Ontario power grid (CBC News Thunder Bay – August 17, 2017)

Canada’s Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs says the federal government has pledged “up to $60 million,” for a long-awaited power project in Ontario’s far north.

Carolyn Bennett announced in Thunder Bay on Thursday that Wataynikaneyap Power — a transmission company owned by 22 First Nations in partnership with Fortis, a Canadian utility — will receive the money to connect Pikangikum to the province’s electricity grid.

The announcement, which sets the stage for work to be done to ensure a reliable flow of electricity to the community, is “thrilling,” Chief Dean Owen said. “The community will just be jubilant about it now, and now we can move forward,” he said. Construction on a 117 kilometre-long power line from Red Lake to Pikangikum is scheduled to begin in October, 2017, according to officials with Watay Power, with an estimated completion date of November, 2018. Continue Reading →

Cameco wins procedural victory in offshore ‘transfer pricing’ tax battle – by Drew Hasselback (Financial Post – August 15, 2017)

Cameco Corp. has defeated the Canadian government’s attempt to force about 25 of the company’s senior executives to submit to questioning on how the company uses offshore entities to reduce its tax bill.

The Minister of National Revenue sought a federal court order that would have compelled a long list of the company executives, including current chief executive Tim Gitzel and former CEO Gerry Grandey, to be interviewed by Canada Revenue Agency staff.

The Minister’s request relates to audits of Cameco’s 2010, 2011 and 2012 tax returns. In particular, the CRA says it wants more information on how Cameco uses foreign subsidiaries to reduce its tax bills. The process is called “transfer pricing,” and Canada has rules on when and how it can be done. Continue Reading →

USW on expected Vale layoffs: ‘They’re looking for efficiencies. Manpower is one.’ (CBC News Sudbury – August 16, 2017)

Union representative Myles Sullivan hoping members stay focused at work

Click here for interview:

Myles Sullivan, the area coordinator for the USW in northeastern Ontario, is cautioning members of the union to stay focused on safety while at work. Not an easy task, when many of Vale’s workers have questions after the mining giant released a company-only video that suggested impending layoffs for staff.

“It’s a very concerning video, outlining the financial situation of the company,” Sullivan said. “There’s a good future [in Sudbury,] a lot of reserves, but the mines need to produce profits.”

Sullivan said the company hasn’t made any final decisions on layoffs, but with new CEO Fabio Schvartsman at the helm of the company since May, all cards are on the table. “They didn’t say a number, but a global company like Vale they’ll invest where they have the best returns,” Sullivan said. “They’re looking at efficiencies. Of course manpower is one.” Continue Reading →

Copper price surges to 32-month high as hedge funds place $20 billion bet – by Frik Els ( – August 16, 2017)

Copper futures trading on the Comex market in New York raced ahead on Wednesday as global supply disruptions came back into view and large-scale speculators place huge bets on rising prices.

In massive volumes of more than 3 billion pounds by lunchtime copper for delivery in September jumped to a high of 2.9795 a pound ($6,569 per tonne), up more than 3% from Tuesday’s close to the highest since end-November 2014.

Copper’s 2017 year to date gains in percentage terms now top 18% and the red metal has recovered 54% in value after falling to six-year lows below $2.00 a pound in January last year. Continue Reading →

Environment v. economy: Canada’s brewing political battle – by Gary Mason (Globe and Mail – August 16, 2017)

There’s a reason the federal Liberals want to include a clause in any rewrite of NAFTA preventing member countries from diminishing environmental safeguards in the name of fuelling investment: It’s an area in which they suddenly find themselves politically vulnerable.

The North America free-trade agreement negotiations are beginning at the same time as the federal government is preparing to bring in new rules that would put more restrictions on companies looking to establish resource development opportunities in Canada.

Provinces are now bracing for the impact of a national carbon tax that is scheduled to be introduced next year in those jurisdictions currently without one, or the equivalent of. (In Ontario and Quebec, that would be cap-and-trade.) The stultifying impact these initiatives could have on resource investment has become a conservative rallying cry in the west, with outgoing Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall leading the charge. Continue Reading →

[Canada Mining] The Top 40 can begin to breathe – by Marilyn Scales (Canadian Mining Journal – August 15, 2017)

Although the economic outlook for Canadian miners brightened somewhat over the last year, this is still a difficult time to be profitable. A look at the current Top 40 ranking by gross revenue (all tables follow text) indicates that the biggest companies remain big, and there was little change from a year earlier.

Agrium again heads the list with gross revenue of $18.1 billion. The fertilizer producer rose to the top of the 2010 list – to the surprise of CMJ editors – and has pretty much stayed there. We shouldn’t be surprised though. A look through the previous 10 years shows Agrium climbing steadily through the ranks and always in the top 10.

With the merger of Agrium and Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan under the Nutrien name, Canada’s potash and fertilizer behemoth can be expected to top next year’s list, too. This year, PotashCorp had revenue of a $5.9 billion and ranked No. 5 in the Top 40 for the third year in a row. Continue Reading →